Toyota estima, rear facing passenger seats!

finnegin, Jan 6, 2:13am
In the Estima models which have the reversible seats, is it legal to travel with them facing this way!

hotrodtodd1, Jan 6, 2:28am
No. and we failed a wof once because they were facing backwards. Had to turn them to face forward & permanently make it impossible to turn them back again.

From memory, the seat belts cant work with the seat facing backwards

gadgit3, Jan 6, 2:45am
Opperational offence. As long as there is a notice in the rear of the van with instruction that the seat can't be rear facing with passangers in while travling then it can get a WoF. But if you get pulled up with people in the rear facing backward then ticket time.

kazbanz, Jan 6, 2:48am
finnigan-short answer is a definite NO. However as long as the seat is facing forwards atr WOF time there is never an issue.
Incidently the requirement for them to always face forwards (welded) was done away with years ago. Common sense for once prevailed.

rozendaal, Jan 6, 6:48am
oops all of those ks in my Spacegear, illegal!

Seriously the seat itself becomes the safety item surely!

thejazzpianoma, Jan 6, 7:34am
Are you saying that because you are facing reward the force pushes you into the seat and therefore you don't need a belt!

If so that's all good until the vehicle roll's or is hit at an angle.

Having been in a vehicle that rolled three times at speed I can tell you that in my case at least the seatbelt did an amazing job of holding me in the seat.

That said rear facing with a seatbelt as well would likely be very good. It certainly works very well in aircraft from what I have heard.

gunhand, Jan 6, 7:39am
I can think of a few vehicles with seats that face people backwards and are quite legal

thejazzpianoma, Jan 6, 7:40am
But they have seatbelts or are old enough not to require them right!

I can think of some too (Mazda 626 and Volvo V70 for starters) but those have seatbelts.

extrayda, Jan 6, 7:40am
Ours can have the middle row facing backwards, and have lap belts (completely seperate from the 3 point belt) that I assume are for when you do this.I don't like lap belts, so have kept the seats facing forwards as the 3 point belts are safer.Never had it mentioned for a WOF, but never had the seats facing backwards at that time either.

owene, Jan 6, 8:24am
Its interesting that all military personal planes have their seats facing backwards.

thejazzpianoma, Jan 6, 8:31am
But would the 3 point belts actually be safer than the lap belts with the seats facing the other way!

Not sure of the answer to be honest but I think you may have drawn a conclusion without considering the situation properly.

gunhand, Jan 6, 8:42am
The OP just asked if its legal to have seats facing backwards, no mention of seatbelt arrangments or the seatbelt at all. One would assume on a van like that the seatbelts would work if seat was turned (I dont know myself) otherwise you wouldnt/shouldnt be able to turn it in the first place or are there still countries with no seatbelt required laws.
Surely it wouldnt comply on import if you wernt allowed to turn the seat. Or is a trust thing that owners wouldnt turn seats LOL.
But there are vehicles on the road with rear facing seats, seatbelts for sure but seatbelts were not part of the question, just can seats face backwards. So yes they can. But I bet its as long as seatbelts work properly

kazbanz, Jan 6, 11:24am
GH--thats why its illegal to have a normally forward facing set face backwards. The 3 point belt doesn't work

r15, Jan 6, 12:15pm
the estima's arrangement must have been fairly safe at the time or else japan wouldn't have let them on their roads like that.

i too believe rear facing seats are safer, but not nice to be in imo

gadgit3, Jan 6, 7:13pm
Alot of guessing going on in this thread. I have had a few estima vans with swilving seats put through compliance and they put a sticker (note) about 5" x 3" on the drivers side of the van in view of the swiliving seat. The note states it is illegal to travle with the seat in rearward facing position. The first one done had to have the seat welded into forward position as hotrodtodd dose as the complince center didn't have any stickers that day.go figger lol. Some vehicles are different and can travle in rearward position with there belt configgeration but the OP is asking about a Toyota Estima and in this case it is illegal

r15, Jan 6, 8:12pm
so how about the ones in a super custom hiace which work in much the same fashion as the estima ones!

gadgit3, Jan 6, 8:37pm
Because of frontal impact and seat belt laws none of the lap belts fitted to the swivling seats in Toyota vans comply. All the vans have 3 point when facing forward but once in the rear ward position the small retracting lap belt is the only one that can be used and this belt dose not comply to our standed. If it was a static lap belt then no proplem but because it retractcs it must be up to ELVRW standed. This is Toyota product only and you can have the seat LVV with replacment lap belts,.

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